Macintosh – 1984
By Apple Computer
The Macintosh computer was released in January of 1984, with 128K RAM of memory. It quickly became obvious
that this was insufficient, so eight months later Apple released an updated version, un-officially referred
to as the ‘Fat Mac’. It has 512K RAM, four times as much.
Before the Macintosh, all computers were ‘text-based’ – you operated them by typing words onto the keyboard.
The Macintosh is run by activating pictures (icons) on the screen with a small hand-operated device called a “mouse”.
Most modern-day computers now operate on this principle, including modern Apple computers and most others which run
the Microsoft Windows operating system.
Except for the very expensive and unpopular Apple Lisa which came out
in 1983, the Macintosh is considered to be the first commercially successful computer to use a GUI
(Graphical User Interface), as seen below.
The Macintosh has no room for internal expansion options – no other cards or devices can be
installed, nor can the graphics capabilities be upgraded. Actually, it takes special tools
just to get the case open.
Although adequate for desktop publishing, many found the 9″ (diagonal) black & white screen
rather small and limiting. The uniqueness of its GUI operating system probably saved the Macintosh
from obscurity like so many others.
Like the Commodore Amiga 1000 and the
Macintosh Portable, the Macintosh has the
signatures of the designer’s cast into the inside of the case.
Don’t forget to use your official Macintosh carrying bag when transporting your favorite computer
to remote locations!
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